Ehrika C. Gladden
Senior Director, Enterprise Services
“Turnaround specialist” Gladden welcomed the opportunity of a new role when she joined Cisco Systems as senior director of Enterprise East Services, overseeing marketing, personnel, operations and profitability. “My background is in profit-and-loss management. If you have a business that’s underperforming from a net margin standpoint, I can find a way to help it grow,” says Gladden. Instrumental in growing Cisco to unprecedented levels, she counts this ability to adjust to and succeed in her position as one of her biggest career accomplishments.
The saying, “To whom much is given, much is expected,” motivates Gladden in every aspect of life. “There’s nothing that I do in my life, whether personal or professional, that doesn’t start with the fact that there is an awful lot expected of me,” she says. Inspired by a host of family members, mentors and professors, she has great admiration for the resilience of the human spirit. “The human spirit is the most inspirational thing to me. I take that energy with me every day,” she says.
Gladden volunteers time to Christian ministry and serves on the board of the Executive Leadership Council as the organization’s secretary. She is a member of the American Cancer Society and a mentor to more than 20 individuals. After countless hours devoted to her professional and volunteer work, she enjoys playing basketball, swimming, cooking, traveling and entertaining. Waterskiing barefoot is one of her biggest joys. Fluent in both Spanish and French, Gladden dreams of moving to the French-speaking Caribbean with her husband, Blayne, to open a “top-shelf” restaurant. “I’d like to give people a fabulous experience,” she says. A graduate of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Gladden also holds a variety of certificates, including from the Center for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, N.C.; Cisco Global Leadership Training, Hungary; and Cisco Executive Action Learning Forum (E-ALF), Singapore.